|Thankfully there are no cornfields in Lincoln.|
My husband Joe left for Kansas yesterday with a group of youth Karate students who are competing in a tournament today, so I made good on my declaration to teach kids more often by taking over the Friday Youth Karate class in his absence. Before class Joe asked me “So, are you going to teach them Jiu-Jitsu?” and I responded “Duh!”.
We didn’t do groundwork the entire time, I warmed them up with relay races, and we practiced some blocking, punching, and kicking. Then we headed over to the mat and did some things that adults usually don’t enjoy but kids seem to think are fun, such as butt-scooting across the mat, and laying on your stomach and pulling yourself across. Luckily I convinced my daughter Skyler to come to class with me, so she helped demonstrate the pins we worked on after that. Joe told me he’d recently shown them mount and guard, so I had them practice scarf hold and back mount.
There were about twelve kids under the age of ten (and two dads who joined in), all of whom were white belts. When I got to the dojo I was a little afraid that the class was going to descend into complete and utter chaos, with children taking weapons off the rack and chasing each other down the street, but it actually went pretty well. I have no idea whether I really taught anyone anything, but when I told them that we were out of time, the entire class let out a collective “awww” in disappointment.
We didn’t practice anything on the mat that they wouldn’t have done in one of our youth Judo classes, but I did let them know that the reason we were doing groundwork was because Skyler and I are also Jiu-Jitsu students. Several of the kids told me they had fun, and when we were in the changing room after class, one of the girls could not contain her excitement over having two female Sensei teaching Karate class! I’m glad I volunteered to teach, and my presence in the youth class will definitely be a more regular occurrence.